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Paying for Working Conditions: Readers in Cigar Factories

In the early 20th century, cigar manufacturing workers paid to have a "reader" (El Lector) read to them while they worked from newspapers or literature. This clip explains the practice. Eventually, radios replaced readers as sources of information and entertainment. Economists use the phrase "compensating wage differential" to describe lower pay in exchange for better conditions. Since the workers paid directly for the reader, their take-home pay was effectively reduced by the cost of the reader.
Length: 04:08

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